• Share

Coca-Cola Life Ad Captures Ups, Downs of Early Parenthood

By:  Jay Moye Dec 19, 2013
Tags & Topics:

It’s only appropriate that Sebastian Wilhelm, the creative director behind the buzzworthy Coca-Cola Life commercial chronicling the joys and pains of parenting, is in the car with his kids when he takes my call.


Over the last two weeks, the 60-second ad created by Wilhelm’s Buenos Aires-based agency, Santo, has garnered international media acclaim, millions of views on YouTube and countless social media shares. The spot promotes Coca-Cola Life, a new low-calorie cola being piloted in Argentina and Chile that is naturally sweetened with stevia leaf extract and sugar. The brand's campaign invites consumers to “open their good nature.”

“Parenthood is the ultimate test of connecting with your good nature,” Wilhelm says over the sounds of his kids’ laughter. “If anybody else did 10 percent of what your children do to you, you’d knock them out of your life. Yet the love you feel for them is so immense that it endures everything. We wanted to communicate that in the ad.”

The commercial opens with a young couple discovering they’re expecting, then captures the sleeplessness, stains, shenanigans -- and indescribable love and affection -- that soon follow. In the closing scene, mom reappears, mouth agape, with news that baby No. 2 is on the way. A faithful remake of the Bee Gees’ “To Love Somebody” appropriately serves as the soundtrack. Watch it here.


“We're inviting people to connect with their most empathic side, not only through the message, but also through the brand style of evoking a simpler, more natural and relaxed life. That’s at the core of our brand proposition and is associated with the product’s natural ingredients," adds Ignacio Hyland, senior brand manager, Coca-Cola Life.

“Parents” was filmed in November just outside Buenos Aires. The four-day shoot was no picnic, Wilhelm says.

“Working with children can be challenging,” he explains, laughing. “The older boy, who was naturally rowdy, was supposed to annoy his father in the last scene… but the minute we needed him to be annoying, we couldn’t get him to cooperate. So we had the idea to put him on the dad’s shoulders… and that’s how we finally got the response we needed.”

The parents' “here we go again!” expressions in the ad’s conclusion -- when the positive pregnancy test makes an encore appearance -- are priceless.

“We were exploring different reactions for the ending -- some more intimate and others more expressive,” Wilhelm says. “Then we realized the song has yelling in the final chorus, so the stars aligned. Once we saw the dad’s reaction in the final shot, we knew we had something good.”

Wilhelm said his team was aiming for “emotional comedy” to mirror Coca-Cola Life's honest, optimistic tone of voice.

“It’s not easy to do, but when done right, it’s really effective,” he adds. “When you can inspire two emotions at the same time -- and you don’t know whether to laugh or cry -- that’s magic.”

Fans can look forward to a second ad featuring the dad and young boy. Santo also produced Coca-Cola Life’s debut commercial, which likens the experience of tasting the new beverage to a first kiss.